Section Navigation

Sonoco's Sustainability Story


Begin the Story


We’re revealing a better world.

We're a world leader in recycling and creating renewable resources, and we can help you become more sustainable though our end-of-life packaging solutions and world-class recycling programs.

Palace Stepps, Division Vice President & General Manager – Sonoco Recycling

Palace Stepps, Division Vice President & General Manager – Sonoco Recycling

  • In one five-year period we received nearly two billion pounds of reels for recycling, saving end users more than $36 million in disposal costs. Even better, recycling all those reels saved more than 300,000 trees.

EcoReel® Recycling Program

Since 1991, Sonoco has been working with utility companies, contractors and distributors to collect old wire and cable reels and spools to be refurbished. The EcoReel® Program is the most comprehensive, cost-effective nailed wood and polyfiber reel recycling program in the industry.

Join the EcoReel Recycling Program
TransGuard Returnable Dunnage

TransGuard® Returnable Dunnage

Protective Packaging You Can Reuse Again and Again

Strong and durable, TransGuard® returnable dunnage is designed to protect your most sensitive products, parts and components during transit. After your product is delivered, empty TransGuard packaging can be returned and refilled again and again. Every TransGuard package is fully recyclable at the end of its useful life.

In addition to providing superior protection, TransGuard delivers optimal packaging density, maximum truckload curbing and yield per container – saving as much as 50% on freight costs and reducing CO2 emissions.

Learn About TransGuard

TransGuard® is ideal for complex and sensitive components such as decorative trim parts, instrument panels, electronics, circuit boards, displays and more.

  • 100% post-industrial, pre-consumer fibers

EOS® Temperature-Controlled Packaging

Expertly Insulated and Easily Recycled

Sonoco ThermoSafe® created the EOS® line of fully curbside recyclable temperature-controlled packaging, giving clients in the life sciences and perishable products industries a truly curbside recyclable system. The insulated shipper maintains a 2°C to 8°C range, and once your products are securely placed, the entire knock-down package can be put in an ordinary recycling bin.

EOS packaging is fully tested and certified to OCC-E standards and ISTA 7E. Made from 100% post-industrial, pre-consumer paper fiber, a feedstock that some of Sonoco’s consumer paper products naturally create, the EOS line is a promising vision of the circular economy inside Sonoco.

Cool Down with EOS

“Partnering with Sonoco means one supplier and endless innovation. Take our EOS® line of shippers, for example. Our expertise in multiple areas including paper manufacturing, thermal insulation and recycling management makes this product innovation possible.”

Jim Lassiter, Division Vice President Healthcare and Protective Packaging

S3 Sustainability Solutions

Sonoco Sustainability Solutions (S3) provides businesses of all types with customized waste reduction programs. They’re designed to decrease waste materials going to landfills, reduce environmental impacts, improve productivity and increase profitability by converting waste streams into revenue streams.

Today, some of the world's most successful manufacturers and retailers rely on S3 to create and implement sustainable business solutions in their facilities. 

Ana Romero

The Sonoco Recycling MRF in Raleigh, NC

Sonoco Helps Unilever Achieve Zero Waste Target

We’ve been working with Unilever since 2003, as a supplier for plastic bottles and as a consultant on waste management. We helped them reach their goal of zero non-hazardous waste to landfill across all global factories—240 industrial sites in 67 countries.

How Sonoco helped Unilever:

  • Consulted on best practices, like waste avoidance and treatment methods for personal care, ice cream and spreads manufacturing sites
  • Helped Unilever to establish its first zero waste to landfill site, in Suffolk, VA
  • Provided more sustainable packaging solutions, like lightweight plastic bottles and reduced film gauges in flexible packaging
Download Case Study

Sonoco Expands Recycling of Paper Containers in the U.S.

Scrap materials from the production of our iconic EnviroCan™ paper containers in the U.S. will now be used as raw material at three of our uncoated paperboard mills to produce new paperboard. This expanded recovery and recycling of our paper containers means an estimated 165 truckloads of scrap will be recycled into paperboard at Sonoco mills every year.

"We are taking the lead to further demonstrate our ability to recycle our paper containers with metal ends not only through the steel stream, as they are largely done today, but also through the paper stream. We look forward to growing consumer access to increase recycling of our paper cans through post-consumer recycling streams," said Elizabeth Rhue, Staff Vice President of Sustainability.

Partner with Us

We know that when it comes to fiber, you want a recycling partner that provides:

  • High-quality, responsibly sourced material
  • A reliable, consistent supply to a rapidly expanding market
  • Responsive, nationwide service
  • Assessments of your current recycling practices and processes
  • Custom-built recycling programs and services that save resources and create opportunities
Sonoco Recycling
  • We collect 200,000 tons of curbside recyclables  in 150 cities across the Southeast.

Making a Local Impact

Near our company headquarters, we operate material recovery facilities in several cities.

Encouraging the Next Generation of Recyclers

Our material recovery facilities in Columbia, Jacksonville, Raleigh and Wilmington feature education centers designed to show how materials are recycled and share the benefits of recycling with local students and community groups.

Our Remarkable Recyclables video and characters teach kids the importance of recycling and how it works.

We also recognize South Carolina schools that develop well-established, model-quality projects that help conserve, protect or restore the school’s environment.

First SC National Green Ribbon Recipient

2019 Dutch Fork Elementary Academy of Environmental Sciences

Overall School of the Year

2020 Irmo High School

Conserve School of the Year

2020 Ocean Bay Middle School

Protect School of the Year

2020 Harmony Elementary School

Restore School of the Year

2020 Sneed Middle School

Get Started on Your Solution

We think about the future of packaging and how it impacts our planet. We work every day to make better products.

Privacy Policy